Seeing a shooting star means that a meteor is plummeting toward earth. The glowing appearance is caused when the meteor's surface catches on fire upon entering the Earth's atmosphere. A shooting star, therefore, is not actually a star.
Although the idea of space debris plummeting toward Earth seems a bit intimidating, meteoroids, which are meteors that are still floating through space, are much smaller than comets or asteroids. Although there are some records of meteors actually making impact on the ground and causing damage, the vast majority of them are either completely consumed by fire before hitting the ground or are extremely insignificant in size and cause virtually no damage.Learn More
Light travels through space as an electromagnetic wave that does not require a medium in order to transfer energy. Due to its dual nature, light consists of both a wave of electromagnetic radiation and particles known as photons.Full Answer >
The Milky Way galaxy contains between 100 billion and 400 billion stars. There is only a tiny fraction of those stars can be named, of course, which is why names are generally only assigned to stars that stand out for some reason as being exceptional.Full Answer >
A total eclipse is an event in which the moon and sun are in perfect alignment with a spot on Earth. This occurrence is much more rare than an annual eclipse, in which the sun leaves a halo of light around the moon. A random spot on Earth experiences a total eclipse approximately once every 400 years, explains the University of Virginia Department of Astronomy.Full Answer >
The sun will last approximately another five billion years, according to NASA in 2012. The sun's light and heat are generated by the burning, or fusing, of hydrogen gas into helium gas.Full Answer >